On 21 October the Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme (MPHRP) and the Taipei Representative Office in the EU and Belgium signed a Memorandum of Understanding, under which Taiwan will donate €30,000 to a Piracy Survivor Family Fund (PSFF), administered by MPHRP, an ISWAN programme, on behalf of the Contact Group for Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS). The Memorandum was signed by Representative Kuo-yu Tung at the Taipei Representative Office in Brussels, and Mr. Tom Holmer, MPHRP Programme Manager.
The Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme (MPHRP) joins the CGPCS stakeholders in expressing their gratitude to Taiwan for this generous donation. Mr. Holmer said "we are delighted to receive this greatly appreciated grant from the Government of Taiwan to the Piracy Survivor Family Fund, which recognises the suffering of the hundreds of seafarers and their dependents who have been the innocent victims of Somali Piracy and have received no or only very limited support since their attack. It will provide a major contribution to relieve some of their resulting financial hardships as they endeavour to rebuild their lives. We look forward to being able to report on positive outcomes as we work with these seafarers over the coming months."
The PSFF was established by the CGPCS under the EU Presidency, in 2014, to provide financial assistance to seafarers affected by Somali piracy and to their families. It fulfils a crucial role in the rehabilitation of piracy victims: since 2006 it is estimated that more than 4,000 seafarers have been held hostage by Somali pirates and that as many as 80,000 have been subjected to an attack. On their return home, many face continued indebtedness as a consequence of the total or partial loss of their wages during their detention, as well as acute health problems. Bereaved families also have similar needs.